Example for Saving Botframework Messages to Sql Server

In my previous article I showed how to override various methods within botframework such that you could run some logic to save your bot’s dialogues.

In this article I’ll give an example implementation of the IMessageRepository Interface.

IMessageRepository and IMessageActivity

In the last article I introduced an IMessageRepository concept in order to show how it would be possible to hook into botframework’s various MessageReceived methods, and create our own version of PostAsync to save outgoing messages also.

Saving both incoming and outgoing messages passed an IMessageActivity object (“context”) to a MessageRepositorys AddMessageAsync method.

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Transcribing messages in BotFramework

Now that you’ve deployed your well structured, exception handling, language understanding chatbot, how do you know just what people are saying to it?

Sure, you could copy and paste some logging code all over the place, but there must be a cleaner way.

In this article I’ll show you a few simple tricks to be able to save each message going to and from your botframework chatbot.


Let’s start off by saving messages going to any dialog that implements IDialog<T>.

In order to implement IDialog<T> you only need to implement the StartAsync method; however, this isn’t much use on its own, so let’s get the dialog into a conversation loop by adding in a MessageReceivedAsync method and calling that from StartAsync and from itself:

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LDNBotFramework Meetup #2 Retrospective: From Zero to Echo via BotFramework

I had an awesome time presenting my session at the second LDNBotframework meetup!

This time I ordered the correct amount of pizza, and let people loose on it at the right time; so no fridge full of pizza for breakfast the next day!

From Zero to Echo via BotFramework

LDNBotFramework #2 - From Zero to Echo via BotFramework

Tight deadline

Having scheduled this session weeks ago, unfortunately my preferred presenters were not able to make it; as such I had just over a week to decide what to do about the already scheduled meetup: should I cancel it and lose momentum, or should I do a session myself?

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BotFramework: Avoiding have to make everything [Serializable]

In the last article I touched on how IoC is used within botframework using Autofac.

If you’re comfortable with IoC, you probably started to enhance your dialogs using constructor injection, so that you can put your conversation logic outside of your entry point and just start coding without needing an implementation to exist yet, e.g.,

public class ResolvingDialog : IDialog<object>
    private readonly IMessageRepository _messageRepository;

    public ResolvingDialog(IMessageRepository messageRepository)
        _messageRepository = messageRepository;

    public async Task StartAsync(IDialogContext context)
        await context.PostAsync($"Hi!");

    public async Task MessageReceivedAsync(IDialogContext context, IAwaitable<IMessageActivity> argument)
        var message = await argument;
        await _messageRepository.SaveMessage(message);

        await context.PostAsync($"working now");

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BotFramework Exception Wrapping and Custom Error Message

During your time building and debugging your botframework chatbot, you’ve probably already come across the annoyance of seeing a huge error message with a ridiculous stack trace that doesn’t seem to relate to your error, or even just a plain old HTTP 500 and big red exclamation mark..

emulator red exclamation mark

Perhaps you’ve deployed to a production environment and are stuck with the stock error message:

Sorry, my bot code is having an issue

In this article I’ll show you how to 1) display useful exception information, and 2) override the default error message sent to the user

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